From our private database of 14,100+ case briefs...
Lisle Corp. v. A.J. Manufacturing Co.
United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit
398 F.3d 1306 (2005)
In May 1989, Lisle Corporation (Lisle) (plaintiff) began developing a tool intended to make automobile steering control repair more efficient. On December 12, 1989, Lisle delivered a prototype of the tool to four repair shops. Lisle did not collect payment for the prototypes, nor did Lisle require the mechanics to execute formal confidentiality agreements. According to company protocol, however, Lisle contacted the mechanics regularly to receive testing feedback. Lisle filed a patent application for the tool on June 26, 1992. In 2002, Lisle brought a patent infringement suit against A.J. Manufacturing Company (A.J.) (defendant). A.J. argued the patent was invalid under the 35 U.S.C. § 102(b) public use bar. At trial, Daniel Williams, co-inventor of the tool, testified that Lisle distributed the prototypes to the mechanics because the inventors needed to test how the tool fit into the tie rods of different automobile models. Williams further testified that he modified the tool’s design based on mechanic feedback, and that though no formal agreements were signed, Lisle maintained prior working relationships with each mechanic. Williams also testified that he believed the mechanics knew the prototype was given to them for testing purposes. A jury concluded that the patent was not invalid under the public use bar. The district court denied A.J.’s motion for judgment as a matter of law. A.J. appealed.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Lourie, J.)
What to do next…
Unlock this case brief with a free (no-commitment) trial membership of Quimbee.
You’ll be in good company: Quimbee is one of the most widely used and trusted sites for law students, serving more than 97,000 law students since 2011. Some law schools—such as Yale, Vanderbilt, Berkeley, and the University of Illinois—even subscribe directly to Quimbee for all their law students. Read our student testimonials.
Learn more about Quimbee’s unique (and proven) approach to achieving great grades at law school.
Quimbee is a company hell-bent on one thing: helping you get an “A” in every course you take in law school, so you can graduate at the top of your class and get a high-paying law job. We’re not just a study aid for law students; we’re the study aid for law students. Read more about Quimbee.
Here's why 220,000 law students have relied on our case briefs:
- Written by law professors and practitioners, not other law students. 14,100 briefs, keyed to 189 casebooks. Top-notch customer support.
- The right amount of information, includes the facts, issues, rule of law, holding and reasoning, and any concurrences and dissents.
- Access in your classes, works on your mobile and tablet. Massive library of related video lessons and high quality multiple-choice questions.
- Easy to use, uniform format for every case brief. Written in plain English, not in legalese. Our briefs summarize and simplify; they don’t just repeat the court’s language.